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Mac Mini Late 2014 SSD or PCIe upgrade?

Hi people!
I have a Mac mini Late 2014, 1.4 GHZ "Core i5" with 1 Tb Fusion Drive with 8 GB RAM. I would like to upgrade it to an SSD. So here are the questions:

1) Can i buy just any SSD brand? or it has to be a particular type. I read of incompatibility issues on iMac for example.

2) Does my model need or has a PCIe SSD and flex cable? it is useful to buy a PCIe SSD or a regular SSD will be fine?

3) Any special tools for this? I read some issues with and adhesive tape regarding the SSD that is a bit critical.

Sorry for so many questions and thanks for any help or guidance.

Cheers,
Sebs

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To start with your systems Fusion Drive is made up of two drives physically! A standard SATA HDD and a small sized PCIe/NVMe blade SSD which is setup as a cache drive to the HDD.

So you have all of the needed connections, the only issue is what you want for performance. Replacing the small blade SSD with a larger drive is the best direction, then setting it up as your boot drive installing the macOS onto it. Then leave your HDD as your data drive. Thats what I would do following this guide Mac mini Late 2014 SSD Replacement and using the OWC Aura Pro X2 SSD either the 480 GB or the 1TB drives.

Its also the easiest upgrade possible! Less than 15mins done!

The needed tools are listed in the guide.

OWC Aura Pro X2 SSD 이미지

상품

OWC Aura Pro X2 SSD

$99.99

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Thanks for the very good info Dan!

Do you know how much GB are in the original PCIe/NVMe blade in the Mac Mini 2014?

The OWC Aura Pro X2 SSD look as an interesting option. It is a bit on the expensive side since 1Tb is $289 USD in iFixit store OWC Aura Pro X2 SSD and $200 USD at OWC Amazon Store OWC SSD Aura Pro X2 de 1.0 TB compatible con MacBook Air (mediados de 2013-2017) y MacBook Pro (Retina, finales de 2013 - mediados de 2015), Mac Pro (finales de 2013) y Mac Mini (finales de 2014)

Is this the same product? Why so much difference in price?

Even if I upgrade the PCIe/NVMe blade don't you think is worth having a fast 1TB SSD for fast access storage? Maybe upgrading the SSD is a bit more complex and that is why you are not recommending it. My HDD is working hard all the time when i am working with graphic design files located on it. I do 2D design, not video editing but it does struggle a bit.

Thanks again for your kind help.

Cheers,

@uzapucax - The Fusion SSD is very small only a 128 GB.

The direction I aimed you to will offer 2 times the performance than switching out your SATA HDD to a SSD drive.

A dual drive setup with a 480 GB or better yet 1 TB PCIe/NVMe SSD and your current SATA HDD will make your system smoke! Trust me its the best you can do here.

If you could get a 16GB logic board it will also offer still more performance. Sadly, this series RAM is soldered to the logic board.

there are many NVMEs; is there a savings over the OWC versions to be found.. and is their architecture going to work with the 2014 Mac mini 7,1 irregardless? thanks

@garykimes - Sorry it’s not that simple! Apple uses a custom connector so a M.2 blade SSD will not fit without an adapter. Then it’s a matter of reliability! Apple does a few things differently in how it does housekeeping as such you can encounter a problem with the M.2 not holding up unlike the Apple SSD, or a direct fit 3rd party SSD like OWC.

I’ve pulled out quite a few M.2 SSD’s in both MacBook Pro’s as well as iMac’s.

Don’t get me wrong I don’t hate M.2 SSD’s! I have a a sizable RAID box which uses them. The rub here is Apple not following the industry standards!

What does the adapter look like? is it Just the cable that runs from the memory to the board?

Like this?

https://www.amazon.com/Sintech-NGFF-NVMe...

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